Faculty Directory
Horacio D. Espinosa

James N. and Nancy J. Farley Professor in Manufacturing & Entrepreneurship

Director, Theoretical and Applied Mechanics Program

Professor of Mechanical Engineering


2145 Sheridan Road
Tech L286
Evanston, IL 60208-3109

847-467-5989Email Horacio Espinosa


Micro and Nanomechanics Lab


Mechanical Engineering

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Ph.D. Solid Mechanics, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

M.Sc. Applied Mathematics, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

M.Sc. Solid Mechanics, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

M.Sc. Structural Engineering, Polytechnic of Milan, Milan, Italy

Civil Engineering, Magma Cum Laude, six-year professional degree, Northeast National University, Corrientes/ Resistencia, Argentina

Research Interests

Professor Espinosa’s research fouses in two areas: (1) understanding the behavior of natural and synthetic materials across scales, from nano to macro, and (2) developing novel engineered devices for both materials research and biological applications.

Significant Recognition

  • Member, Russian Academy of Engineering, 2011-present
  • Murray Medal, Society for Experimental Mechanics, 2014
  • Fellow, American Academy for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 2013
  • Sia Nemat-Nasser Medal, Society for Experimental Mechanics, 2013
  • Member, European Academy of Sciences and Arts (elected), 2010
  • Member, U.S. National Committee of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, 2010-present
  • Member, Society of Engineering Science Board of Directors (elected), 2008-present
  • Fellow, Society for Experimental Mechanics, 2008
  • Lazan Medal, Society for Experimental Mechanics, 2008
  • SES Young Investigator Medal, Society of Engineering Science, 2007
  • Hetenyi Award, Society of Experimental Mechanics, 2005
  • Fellow, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, 2004
  • Junior Award, American Academy of Mechanics, 2002
  • Fellow, American Academy of Mechanics, 2001
  • ASME, Electronic and Photonic Packaging Division, Appreciation Award, 2001
  • ONR-Young Investigator Award, 1997
  • NSF-CAREER Award, 1996

Significant Professional Service

  • President, Society of Engineering Science, 2012-present
  • Founding Principal Editor of Materials Research Communications, 2011-present
  • Co-Editor of the Wiley Book Series on Micro and Nanotechnologies, 2009-present
  • Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Experimental Mechanics, 2006-2010
  • Associate Editor of the Journal of Applied Mechanics, 2003-2009
  • Associate Editor of the Journal of Experimental Mechanics, 2002-2006
  • Editor of Mechanics a publication of the American Academy of Mechanics, 1998- 2004
  • Member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Nanomechanics and Micromechanics, 2010-present
  • Member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Laboratory Automation, 2007-present
  • Member of the Editorial Board of the International Review of Mechanical Engineering (IREME), 2007-present

Selected Publications

    R. Ramachandramoorthy, W. Gao, R. Bernal and H. D. Espinosa, "High Strain Rate Tensile Testing of Silver Nanowires - Rate Dependent Brittle-to-ductile Transition" Nano Letters, DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.5b03630, 2015.

    X. Wei, L. Mao, R. A. Soler-Crespo, J. T. Paci, J. Huang, S. T. Nguyen and H. D. Espinosa, "Plasticity and ductility in graphene oxide through a mechanochemically induced damage tolerance mechanism" Nature Communications, Vol. 6, Article 8029, DOI: 10.1038/ncomms9029, 2015.

    M. R. Roenbeck, A. Furmanchuk, Z. An, J. T. Paci, X. Wei, S. T. Nguyen, G. C. Schatz and H.D. Espinosa, "Molecular-Level Engineering of Adhesion in Carbon Nanomaterial Interfaces" Nano Letters, Vol. 15, p. 4504-4516, 2015.

    S. S. P. Nathamgari, B. Dong, F. Zhou, W. Kang, J. P. Giraldo-Vela, T. McGuire, R. L. McNaughton, C. Sun, J. A. Kessler and H. D. Espinosa, "Isolating single cells in a neurosphere assay using inertial microfluidics" Lab on a Chip, DOI: 10.1039/c5lc00805k, 2015.

    R.A. Bernal, A. Aghaei, S. Lee, S. Ryu, K. Sohn, J. Huang, W. Cai and H.D. Espinosa, "Intrinsic Bauschinger Effect and Recoverable Plasticity in Pentatwinned Silver Nanowires Tested in Tension" Nano Letters, Vol. 15, No. 1, p. 139-146, 2014.

    W. Kang, J.P. Giraldo-Vela, S.S.P. Nathamgari, T. McGuire, R.L. McNaughton, J.A. Kessler and H.D. Espinosa, "Microfluidic Device for Stem Cell Differentiation and Localized Electroporation of Postmitotic Neurons" Lab on a Chip, 14 (23), 4486–4495, 2014.

    A.M. Beese, Z. An, S. Sarkar, S. Shiva P. Nathamgari, H.D. Espinosa and S.T. Nguyen, "Defect-Tolerant Nanocomposites through Bio-Inspired Stiffness Modulation" Advanced Functional Materials, 24 (19), 2883-2891, 2014.

    M.R. Roenbeck, X. Wei, A.M. Beese, M. Naraghi, A. Furmanchuk, J.T. Paci, G.C. Schatz and H.D. Espinosa, "In Situ Scanning Electron Microscope Peeling To Quantify Surface Energy between Multiwalled Carbon Nanotubes and Graphene" ACS Nano, 8 (1), 124–138, 2014.

    W. Kang, F. Yavari, M. Minary-Jolandan, J.P. Giraldo-Vela, A. Safi, R.L. McNaughton, V. Parpoil and H.D. Espinosa, "Nanofountain Probe Electroporation (NFP-E) of Single Cells" Nano Letters, 13 (6), 2448-2457, 2013.

    O. Loh, X. Wei, J. Sullivan, L.E. Ocola, R. Divan and H.D. Espinosa, "Carbon-Carbon Contacts for Robust Nanoelectromechanical Switches" Advanced Materials, 24 (18), 2463–2468, 2012.

In the Classroom

Professor Espinosa has taught a variety of courses, including Introduction to Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS), Experiments in Micro/Nano Science and Engineering, Experimental Engineering, Elasticity, Damage and Inelasticity of Advanced Materials, Advanced Computational Mechanics, Mechanics of Materials, and Aircraft Structures.

His teaching philosophy addresses issues that require particular attention in modern education: (a) the increasingly international world of business and markets; (b) the technological advances that are continuously raising the speed at which information is obtained and transmitted; and (c) the dynamics of the job market that makes likely that most individuals will enjoy several careers in their lifetime. It is his view that a student-centered curriculum in which the student takes responsibility for her or his education rather than a rigid and static core curriculum is the best choice for the future. Such a curriculum maximizes multidisciplinary course work, independent study and research (honor degrees), and encourages experimentation and intellectual expansion.